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AMD 760 chipset; good news for Frenchies

"Available now!" they said. "All over Europe!" they said. We rather think not

AMD are for one of the first times since the release of their Athlon over a year ago, finding themselves in an egg-on-face situation. The DDR RAM-based 760 chipset was announced publicly on Monday, and claims that it was "available now" on Gigabyte's GA-7DX were of course cheerfully received, that is, until people attempted to buy it. You see, the release pointed the finger at distributor NEC, whose European outfit is still claiming that the boards are nearly a month off. Eagle-eyed IT website The Register has been doing its usual utmost to uncover proceedings, contacting various strands of NEC all over the place, all of whom are none the wiser. Through telesales, the main office and even a section of the French operation there is no news. In fact, even the main Gigabyte website based in Taiwan carried no mention of the GA-7DX yesterday, nor today. In fact, there is nothing on the 760 chipset at Gigabyte, Jetway, MSI, ABit or ASUS' manufacturer websites. Nobody has details on this thing except AMD's press department. In fact, when grilled over the issue by The Register, AMD's European spokesman confirmed that "if that's the case, then the information we were given to write the press release must have been incorrect." Of course, this behavior is nothing new for the CPU and motherboard industries. It has been common practice for market-leader Intel to develop a chip in the comfortable confines of its testbases, then announcing it before it's prepared to cope with demand. The Pentium III CopperMine revision is a classic example; buyers read Intel's PR and hung on phrases like "available now", only to discover that it wasn't. Hardware suppliers have been carrying Intel pricelists for months, but many of them would deny that they have stock on more than a few. As for the psychological 1GHz barrier which Intel claim to have broken with their Pentium III 1GHz CopperMine; one doubts that you could round up more than a dozen of them in this country at the moment. The associated pricetag is more down to availability problems than manufacturing costs.. So as it stands, both Intel and AMD are major CPU manufacturers, and both are similarly important in the motherboard chipset market, yet neither can accurately report on the availability of its equipment. It seems that nowadays it's unwise to order anything without first scouring the web for some source of third party information on the subject. Although these press releases are there to sell you a product, the main emphasis is on stirring things up amongst the competition. At that, both companies are successful, at supplying the consumer, it would seem they are not.